Art Exhibitions title

Watercolor Paintings

July - Aug | Brenda Hounshell

8 AM - 4 PM (M - F) | Frances Plecker Education Center


Artist Statement

In 2010 I made a decision to return to doing artwork after finishing my career years. My challenge was deciding the path to take for the work I wanted to pursue. After taking a local watercolor class it became clear that the challenge of the medium of watercolor was going to be my choice.

Who puts water on paper on purpose? It seems counterintuitive but as soon as the artist realizes the beauty of transparent watercolor washes it is easy to get hooked. Each painting teaches something about the subject matter, tools being used and the medium itself.

More than just learning the painting process I was exploring, the calming and healing properties of the creative process started to become clear.

As I practiced, took classes and explored the medium it became clear that painting offered more than a creative outlet. Whether choosing a subject, deciding on colors and values or the actual act of painting, I found myself more and more at peace while doing the work. At the end of a particularly difficult day I would put everything aside and just focus on the current painting on my work surface. In a matter of minutes, I was calm, contented and filled with a joy I still have difficulty trying to describe.

Whether we choose music, gardening, cooking, baking, knitting or any of the many choices for creative outlets, we should indulge ourselves to pursue these treasured moments. Life is too short not to give ourselves the gift of time to create something beautiful to share with others. In doing so, perhaps we help them to somewhat calm and heal themselves.

Valentina currently resides in Linden, Virginia where she works as an artist in oil, pastel and watercolor, expressing herself mostly using landscapes and portraits. She enjoys travelling both locally and around the world with her easel and puts whatever charming atmospheres she observes onto canvas or paper. Her collection of paintings and sketches include the Shenandoah Valley, the Western United States, and even further into Europe and New Zealand. 

For over a decade, she has attended Robert Liberace’s class in Portrait and Figure at the Art League School in Alexandria, VA. Learning specialized techniques from these classes has allowed her to expand her skills and her portraits now allow the observer to "feel" the persons soul. 

As an artist, Valentina is able to express her feelings about the beauty of nature, the variety of people, and the world around her.



January - February | JMU Student Exhibition
March - April | Frances Coates


January - February | Erica Lohan
March - April | Jackie Labovitz
May - June | Tony DiStefano
July - August | Ann Currie & Christine Andreae
Sept - Oct | Andrea Finch
Nov - Dec | Lotta Helleberg


Janurary - February | Gene Gibb
March - April | Kelli Hertzler
May - June | Carol Kirkham Martin
July - August | Dabney Kirchman
Sept - Oct | Celia Culver Rutt
Nov - Dec | Lynn Whitmore


January - February | Jessica Horting + Sarah Phillips
March - April | Nadia Louderback
May - June | Tamara Gibson
July - August | Nancy Spahr
September - October | Sharon Strite
November - December | Joyce Ellis Overby


January - February | Deborah Davis
March - April | Mia LaBerge
May - June | Carol Kirkham Martin
July - August | Annette Naber
September - October | Martha Crider Henderson
November - December | Janet Pearlman



January - February | Celia Culver Rutt
March - April | Janet Lee Wright
May - June | Denise Kanter Allen
July - August | Manita K. Bentley
September |Arboretum Employees
October | Jeremiah Morris
November |Elaine Hurst


January - February | Brian Ripley
March - April | Sarah Phillips
May - June | Paige Ramsey
July - August | Lynda Chandler
September - December | Jewel Yoder Hertzler
November - December | Brenda Fairweather


January - February | JMU Art Students Exhibit
March - April | Marilyn Banner
May - June | Anita Cooper
July - August | Gabrielle Gill
September - October | Jeffery Stockberger
November - December | Judith N. Ligon


January 2012 | Evan McGrew
February - March | Christine Andreae
April - May | Frank Ceravalo
June - July | Steven Johnson
August - September | Janet Cardwell
October | A Collective Exhibit of Children's Botanical Drawings
November - December | Carl 'Spike' Knuth


May - June | Ed Gowen
July - August | Barbara Wachter
September | Matalie Griffin Rivard Deane
October - November | Carolyn Ratcliffe
December |Evan McGrew

Edith J. Carrier Arboretum
780 University Blvd, MSC 3705
Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807

(540)-568-3194 | 
Grounds | Free to the public | Dawn to dusk | 365 days a year
Frances Plecker Education Center | Monday - Friday | 8 AM - 4 PM

Back to Top